Later on, he went back and retrieved the women’s T-shirt he threw out to the trash.
For no other reason other than he was afraid that Aunt Wu might see “ladies wear” on it when she collects the trash and misunderstand.
It’s difficult enough to be able to go study on his own. He simply didn’t need his family to think too much.
So just like that, the nowhere-to-put white T-shirt was brought to school.
To be fair, no one would’ve known that the T-shirt was for ladies if not for the label, but the label on the neckline was printed and could not be torn off.
How rare it was, that there would be a time when He Shen couldn’t come up with a reply.
“Um…” He Shen paused, “That style doesn’t differentiate between men and women, right?”
Qiao Shao pulled his backpack from under the bed and threw the white T-shirt from inside unto his hands.
The bright words “PURE LOVE ladies wear” caught He Shen’s eyes.
He couldn’t help but chuckle.
You still dare laugh!
Qiao Shao angrily retorted, “This is ladies wear. Look how slim the waist is!”
He Shen opened it up and compared it with Qiao Shao from afar, “It fits you just right.”
Qiao Shao repeated, “But it’s ladies wear!”
“So what?” He Shen countered, “the label’s inside, no one would know.”
The reasoning’s good, but… “A man’s skull may be broken and his blood may bleed, but he must not wear a lady’s clothes!”
He Shen found it funny, but at the same time, he felt a stab of pity for the other man—the more life becomes difficult, the stronger one’s pride is. He understood that.
Thinking of this, He Shen felt slightly ashamed. This practical joke of his went a bit off. It really was like bullying a child.
He put away the shirt and said, “I’ll change it for you.”
Qiao Shao: “?”
He Shen came over and ordered, “Take off your clothes first.”
He said that as he helped Qiao Shao take off his shirt.
Qiao Shao didn’t refuse. He was already accustomed to being waited upon when dressing. He even raised his arms obediently.
He Shen took off his dirty clothes and frowned, “You…are pretty white.”
Qiao Shao sat confidently, “Not really, I tan a lot in summer.”
He Shen: “You haven’t seen me after I take my clothes off.”
Qiao Shao immediately felt the provocation: “How about I shower you in pickled cabbage and give you a chance to undress?”
“Sure,” He Shen blinked most innocently: “Then we can go ahead and take a lovers’ bath.”
Qiao Shao exploded, “Shut up!”
He Shen knew he was being mean, but it was just too much fun to tease this kid that he couldn’t help it.
He picked up Qiao Shao’s dirty clothes and went to the bathroom.
The “premium” rooms in the fifth floor has a washing machine. He Shen applied some laundry detergent and threw in the clothes into the machine.
Although Qiao Shao was annoyed with his nonsense, he couldn’t remain angry as the other man genuinely helped him with these.
As he came out, He Shen told him: “Wait here.”
Qiao Shao wanted to ask what he was going to do, but the other man already left.
About ten minutes later, Qiao Shao finished his shower and He Shen already came back.
Qiao Shao looked at him.
He Shen seemed to have ran about, his voice slightly short of breath: “Here.”
Qiao Shao took the bag and saw a clean blue and white T-shirt inside.
He Shen asked, “You don’t have a uniform, right? This one is similar to our uniform.”
Qiao Shao looked up at him, “You reallyk2026;” went to buy clothesk2026;
“Recommending ladies wear to a boy was my mistake. This is compensation.” He Shen said as he sat on Lou Xiao’s bed.
Qiao Shao looked at the clothes and immediately knew that this was not a discounted item in the supermarket.
Just as he was about to ask for the price, He Shen said: “Wear it. If you don’t, we’ll have to throw it away. Not a lot of people can wear this size.”
That little bit of conflict within Qiao Shao all flew out.
Thank you my foot. He Shen owed him this!
Who cares how much it is. What kind of expensive clothes hasn’t he worn before?
After putting on the shirt, Qiao Shao sadly discovered that this size was exactly right for him, neither too big nor too small. It even fit better than the previous one.
He Shen was able to admirably hold himself back, not telling the boy that the shirt was from the children’s section.
Little Qiao Shao was just really too small. Good thing that they’re still at the stage of development. If he ate well and exercised a lot, he could definitely still grow.
And so the issue on ladies wear was closed for the time being.
He Shen always made him mad, but after helping him wash clothes and buy clothes, Qiao Shao felt grateful from the bottom of his heart.
And so he asked, “How much is the medicine and food? I’ll pay you back.” After all, it’s not good to owe somebody so much.
He Shen didn’t even consider making him pay. He was afraid Qiao Shao would starve for the whole week if he did pay.
On the other hand, he thought about Qiao Shao’s earnest attitude. His pride would most likely be hurt if he didn’t pay back.
He replied: “Forty-six yuan in total.”
Qiao Shao was dumbfounded for a moment.
That’s really cheap, was what he thought. Of course his dumfound-ness can also be understood as shock from how really expensive it was.
Before the other man could say anything, He Shen said: “I’m the creditor, so I’ll set the payment terms.”
Qiao Shao faintly felt a trap ahead, but how could he ever understand He Shen’s train of thought…
He heard He Shen say, ” Forty-six Yuan, in installment payments. You pay me back one dime a day.”
Qiao Shao: “???”
Boss He did a quick calculation by hand: “So that’s 460 days, it’ll be cleared a little over a year.”
Either He Shen’s crazy or he himself’s gone crazy, Qiao Shao thought: “That’s…”
“Add me on WeChat.” He Shen continued.
Qiao Shao took out his mobile phone, and He Shen scrolled down, “Remember, every morning the first thing you do is pay me through WeChat.”
Qiao Shao looked at him and only saw seriousness in his brown eyes.
Are ordinary students so poor that even 46 yuan had to be returned in 460 days?
Is he too detached from reality, or is reality just this magical?
He Shen patted his head and said, “It’s late, I’ll go ahead.”
Qiao Shao was still in a state of confusion: “The money…”
He Shen continued, “will be paid back starting tomorrow.”
“No…” Poor Qiao Shao lost the chance to speak because his “creditor” already left.
He stared blankly at his mobile phone, particularly at this new friend added in his WeChat.
His phone number was brand new. His WeChat was also a new account. And the first and the only new friend he has in it is He Shen.
He Shen’s profile picture was a book. The cover was dark blue, and on the cover was a person beside an eye-catching bonfire deep in a cold and bleak forest, looking as if he was abandoned by the entire world.
Qiao Shao was able to identify the silver pressed book title above.
He Shen’s WeChat name also proved it. His name—Without Friday.
Qiao Shao once read Robinson Crusoe during elementary school, and remembers that Robinson adopted a small savage man called Friday in the latter part of his life.
A Robinson without a Friday?
Qiao Shao blinked twice. He actually felt a bit of pity for the man.
At this moment, the sound of the door opening disrupted Qiao Shao’s thoughts and he quickly hid his mobile phone.
Chen Su came back with a tired look, the dark circles under his eyes apparent.
Qiao Shao greeted him, “What were you up to?”
Completely taken by surprise, Chen Su realized just now that there was somebody in the room, “No…nothing much.”
Qiao Shao couldn’t stand, so he looked on from the bed, “Chen Su?”
Chen Su was slightly flustered as he answered, “I see someone delivered you food, so I’ll go ahead to the cafeteria.”
Qiao Shao detected that Chen Su had something he didn’t want to say, so he didn’t ask and changed the topic to a question about a subject in class.
Talking about studies energized Chen Su a lot, and he sat beside Qiao Shao to talk.
Qiao Shao listened earnestly, and praised him directly, “You explain better than the teacher!”
Chen Su pursed his lips and smiled: “It’s because you heard it twice.”
Qiao Shao: “I don’t care. I just know that I don’t understand when the teacher says it, and I get it all when you explain it.”
Chen Su’s mood visibly got better.
The bell for lights out was about to go off, and Blue Hair had no plans on coming back.
No need to even mention Lou Xiao, he doesn’t even come back during nights.
That bothered him a bit. Since they’re not in school, why was there a need to reserve a bed for them? Just a waste of resources.
He and Chen Su laid down on their bed and remained silent for a while. Unable to take it, Qiao Shao finally whispered, “Chen Su, can I ask you something?”
Chen Su whispered back: “What?”
Qiao Shao continuously whispered, “I don’t mean anything by this, it’s just for reference…um, how much money do you bring to school in a week?”
This isn’t considered invasion of privacy, right? Qiao Shao thought worriedly.
Chen Su paused for a second, and replied, “two to three hundred is enough, but I only eat in the cafeteria so fifty to sixty yuan is workable.”
Qiao Shao was flabbergasted! Shocked speechless!
fifty to sixty? Yuan?
fifty to sixty US dollars wasn’t even considered money!
Chen Su saw him quiet and added in a low voice, “Don’t compare with the guys in the international class. They’re different. As long as we can eat our fill, it’s good enough.”
It’s obvious that aside from He Shen, Chen Su also thought of Qiao Shao as a poor kid.
When Qiao Shao came back to his senses, he misunderstood completely. So it seems the international class students started with 200-300 a week, and regular students start with 50-60…
He solemnly declared, “Of course I won’t compare with the international class.”
He’s here to study hard, not only learning from Chen Xu how to study but also to be a low-key ordinary high school student like him.
However Chen Su was actually not an ordinary high school student.
Because the standard of his reference was too low, it caused Qiao Shao’s standard of living to become increasingly smaller and poorer.
By the time he realized that his object of reference didn’t seem right, it was more than too late.
Qiao Shao fished out his phone, looked at He Shen’s profile picture and felt in his heart deep gratitude.
If a week’s living expenses was around 50-60, then 46 yuan was really a huge sum.
He Shen wanted him to pay in installments so that he doesn’t starve to death, right?
No matter how bad this person spoke, his heart was kind.
Qiao Shao opened a chat window and sent one dime to He Shen with a note: Thanks.
He Shen’s phone chimed as he got out of the school gate.
He pulled out his phone and saw the message. A corner of his lips lifted in a smile.
Open-eyed blind Big Boss Lou raised an eyebrow, “What’s up?”
He Shen waved his phone before the other man’s eyes.
Lou Xiao: “?”
Not to mention waving it in front of him, even if He Shen held it in place, he still wouldn’t be able to see it properly.
He Shen didn’t plan to show him properly anyway.
“I’m thinking of a problem.”
Lou Xiao thought he was serious, “Yeah?”
He Shen spoke low as he accepted the dime and returned a reply, “With a principal of 46, what kind of interest rate would it be to be able to pay one dime a day, and gain 46 yuan of interest after 460 days?”
Lou Xiao almost dropped his cigarette, “What?”
He Shen: “Nothing.”
Lou Xiao looked at him, “Is there a problem with your finances?”
“Yeah,” He Shen smiled devilishly, “I’m thinking of how to get someone to pay me back one dime every day for an entire lifetime.”
Qiao Shao’s phone vibrated. When he took it put and opened —-
Without Friday: Received. (* ￣3)(ε￣ *)
This emoji….Qiao Shao was shocked inside out.
The author has something to say: I can’t help but repeat this every day.
Brother Shen is straight!
As straight as a flagpole!
Translator’s note: This chapter was brought to us by my friend, F.E. She’s amazing and has a far better grasp of Chinese than I ever could. I keep trying to get her to do translations. =)
Robinson Crusoe: Link